"Forbidden Friendship "
How To Train Your Dragon


How to Train Your Dragon is the story of Hiccup, a Viking who feels out of place since he's not a fan of killing the dragons the Viking's world so revolves around in. But, when Hiccup captures the rare Night Fury Dragon and inadvertently injures it, the two become fast friends and attempt to bridge the gap of understanding between the Dragons & the Vikings.

Within chapter six of  “How To Train Your Dragon” movie is of Hiccup going to where Toothless the dragon is stuck since he has a damaged tail wing. This is due to the actions of Hiccup earlier in the film. Hiccup later learns that a down dragon, a dragon that cannot fly is a dead dragon. Hiccup knowing that he cannot or will not kill a dragon as the other Vikings do wants to learn about toothless and befriend him, there is a forbidden friendship that will be made.

What makes this scene to me one of the most cinematic accomplishments in cinema history for an animated film is how it was executed. There is almost no dialogue in this scene expect for the very beginning where the scene starts off with Hiccup bringing a fish to Toothless as Hiccup talks to himself and Toohless takes the fish. At this point in the scene the music played is titled “Forbidden Friendship” composed by John Powell.

Toothless knowing that Hiccup let him live is grateful that Hiccup brought him the fish to eat since he is at this point starving. Toothless approaches Hiccup and Hiccup in fear backs away and tells Toothless in fear that he does not have any more. Toothless at this point regurgitates part of the fish for Hiccup and sits there waiting for him to eat the fish. Reluctantly Hiccup takes a bite and swallows. He looks up at Toothless and smiles and Toothless attempts to smile back as Hiccup reaches towards him. Toothless flies away as he is still uncertain of Hiccup and his attentions of being there.

Hiccup follows Toothless to where he just heated the ground with dragon fire and lays there for a nap. Toothless turns to see Hiccup sitting beside him smiling; he covers his head with his wings and tail. Hiccup scoots in a little closer as Toothless raises his wings and Hiccup jumps up to move away.

The scene fades into the early evening where Toothless is hanging from a tree sleeping; he awakes and sees that Hiccup is still around. Toothless sneaks up from behind to see what Hiccup is doing. Hiccup is sitting on a rock drawing an image of Toothless in the dirt with a stick. Hiccup startled does not turn around but continues drawing in the dirt. Toothless following Hiccup’s drawing in the dirt goes off and comes back with a small tree and attempts to draw on the ground as well. Hiccup stays seated on the rock and watches Toothless draw. As Toothless finishes his drawing he sits down and looks proud of what he has just done.

Hiccup stands up to take a look and starts to walk around trying to take in what he sees. Hiccup steps on a line that Toothless has drawn and Toothless gets mad. Hiccup immediately lifts his foot and Toothless is happy once again. Hiccup steps on the line and removes his foot from it several times gauging Toothless’s reaction. Hiccup now knowing not to step on the dragons drawing carefully steps around looking at it making sure not to step on it.

As Hiccup is moving about the drawing he backs into Toothless as Toothless exhales letting Hiccup know he is there. Hiccup and Toothless look at each other as Hiccup slowly moves his hand up to touch Toothless but pulls back as Toothless growls. Hiccup turns and lowers his head is submission and slowly raises his hand once again holding it there in the air. Toothless carefully places his nose into Hiccup’s hand, Hiccup flinches and turns to look. Both Hiccup and Toothless stare at each other in acceptance then Toothless scoots away as Hiccup knows there is a friendship in the making.

Now that you know the scene you might wonder why I am so impressed with it. With the little to no dialogue and the wonderful music really sets the scene but what makes this scene really pop is the attention to details in the two characters. What I mean by details are the very little ticks and ever so soft expressions and movements of the characters. Both characters express themselves so realistically for an animated movie that it is beyond impressive. One thing I am a big advocate in animated films are eye contact. When Hiccup and Toothless look at each other you see and feel their emotion. Plus with the lighting of the scene and camera movements this scene is just filled with emotion that I feel could or if I may be sold bold to say will win awards. That is how powerful this scene is in my opinion.

If someone wants an excellent example of how to make a scene powerful and full of emotion without a lot of dialogue I would suggest looking at this scene in “How To Train Your Dragon”. With the proper music, lighting and action from the actors any mood is capable of being translated very powerfully.

I hope you will find as I did this small piece of cinema inspiring.

The movie “How To Train Your Dragon” is a fantastic animated film by Dreamworks.